Illegal airbnbs bad for everyone
Have you notice a marked increase in rental cars in your formerly quiet little neighborhood? If so, chances are someone on your block has turned their home into an illegal airbnb.
We live on a short, dead-end road. Just before the holidays, we noticed a stream of tourists going up the road in the evening and leaving in the morning. With a little investigation, we found out our neighbor had turned his three-bedroom house into a five-room airbnb, renting each room for as little as $69 a night.
Loud noise, parking problems, strangers knocking on doors looking for the “airbnb” are just some of our daily occurrences that plague us, now that our greedy neighbor is illegally cashing in on this phenomenon. We filed a complaint with the county, but he simply ignores the citations and violation notices.
This trend is selfish, bad for us, and bad for the whole island. Instead of affordable long-term rentals that locals can afford, these homes are now “off the market” for long-term renters. The county is, of course, not collecting the visitor taxes that legal vacation rentals have to pay, putting more of a burden on all of the taxpayers on Kauai. Formerly quiet family neighborhoods churn with vacationers who party, play loud music, roam around, and do what people do who are here for short vacations.
The county must put a stop to this illegal activity. The enforcement need to be more aggressive and the penalties need to be more severe. The county needs to direct more resources to clamp down on these lawbreakers. Maybe the hotel association should consider suing these illegal bnbs as well as the parent company, Airbnb, for unfair business practices for advertising illegal vacation rentals, and essentially, taking away their business by illegal means. Everyone should be forced to play by the rules. Greedy people who do this shouldn’t be allowed to ruin things for the rest of us who do follow the law.
Mike Vallee, Kalaheo
Mural added to enjoyment on path
As snowbirds to Kapaa for 12 years, my husband and I were very disappointed to see the coverup of the mural depicting the town of Kapaa’s identity and the island’s character on the wall across from the Neighborhood Center, along the Coastal Path.
We were quite delighted by encountering this work of art on our walk each day. It added a bit of whimsy to the beauty of the ocean, the mountains, and the sunrise each morning. We felt it was a lovely depiction of the character of the island. Its coverup looks so bleak and boring. In our eyes, art and nature can coexist and complement each other.
We are sorry that the community board and the landlord did not share our appreciation for the work of art. We would like to thank the artists who created the mural and wish them much success with their future artistic works. Thank you for the short time that your work added to the enjoyment of our morning walk on the Coastal Path.
Oh, and we did manage to take a picture of it before it was obliterated. So it will live on in some way and be shared with family and friends back home in Canada.
Beth Long, Snowbird in Kapaa